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IS Group Claims Twin Baghdad Blasts

The extremist Islamic State (IS) group has claimed responsibility for twin bomb attacks in Baghdad that killed at least 19 people.

The two car bombs went off about 10 minutes apart late on May 2 in the busy commercial area of Karrada in the heart of Baghdad.

The blasts struck near restaurants and coffee shops filled with customers, police officials said.

Police said the dead and wounded were mainly shoppers and people commemorating the death of Imam Ali, a key figure in Shi'ite Islam.

The extremist group said on May 3 it was targeting a Shi'ite militia as a response to fighting in the western Anbar Province, where Iraqi troops and paramilitary forces began an offensive last month to recapture the Sunni heartland from the militants.

Based on reporting by AP and

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